Setting expectations

It is important to clarify what coaching is and is not very early in the process. People may have ideas about how it might work and what might happen. You need to confirm correct assumptions and expectations. This will clarify the roles and responsibilities of the coach and the coachee. They need to understand they are entering into a partnership with the coach which differs from the relationships they may have had with teachers and trainers in the past.

 The coachee's responsibilities

(if you cannot open Flash then please continue to the text version below)


On screen this interactive illustration contains rollovers that highlight the coachee’s responsibilities.

The coachee needs to be:

  1. Motivated.
  2. Willing to learn.
  3. Ready to take responsibility for their own learning.
  4. Receptive to change.
  5. Open and honest with their coach.
  6. Aware of how coaching works.
  7. Able to listen actively.
  8. Prepared to ask questions.
  9. Willing to accept challenges.
  10. Prepared to take risks within the coaching environment.
  11. Open to new ideas and approaches.
  12. Prepared to work in partnership with the coach.
  13. Willing to face weaknesses.
  14. Willing to adopt self-assessment.
  15. Able to persevere.

Motivation and co-operation

The success of coaching depends largely on the coachee’s motivation to change. An individual volunteering for coaching obviously places value on the possibilities it offers and is likely to be highly motivated to participate and change. However, in a workplace situation a colleague may be referred to you for coaching by a third party, possibly a manager. The circumstances surrounding the referral and the way the manager instigated the referral will have a bearing on the coachee’s motivation and attitudes. There is always the possibility they won’t acknowledge a need for change and may be reluctant to participate.

As a coach, you need to know who has instigated the coaching arrangement, as this may influence the coachee’s attitudes and motivation. This in turn will influence the approach you adopt to the coaching. Consider these examples.
Activity: How receptive will the coachee be?

Last modified: Wednesday, 5 December 2018, 3:15 PM